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Red Rocks Marsh NNR, Merseyside

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Old Saturday 19th March 2005, 12:03   #1
Jane Turner
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Red Rocks Marsh NNR, Merseyside

I thought since I spent most of my birding time at Red Rocks, I should keep a thread going in parallel to the one for my house. There is more chance of something exciting appearing here and I will endeavour to take a few pictures to liven it up!


If you want to see info on RR - check >---HERE---<



Yesterday was my first dawn trip of the spring. I'd seen a Wheatear the previous morning and was greeted by the sight of a new, cold looking male clinging to the rocks under the sea wall. Later on there were two more on the 16th fairway of the Royal Liverpool GC. Overhead passage was promising, with 3 Grey Wagtails, about 50 Meadow Pipits and a few finches; most interestingly a handful of Siskin and a single Lesser Redpoll. Other birds moving south, as nearly all birds do at Red Rocks, regardless of season, were 25 or so Woodpigeons and more interestingly single Rook and Lapwing - both unusual records.

Breeding is well underway, with 6 Skylarks and 4 Reed Buntings singing. I also blundered into a pair of Mallard at the south end of the marsh - my first of the year in the area.

The only other notable bird was a large female Sparrowhawk, intially seen pursued by a pair of Magpies, though it soon turned the tables and was last seen charging through the dunes in hot pursuit of the rather surprised sounding Corvids!

I'll put together a year list shortly - though I have already missed a bit of a crippler - a Kingfisher on the Natterjack scapes! I think my last here was as long ago as 1976! Speaking of Toads, there was plenty of gratuitous Common Toad sex going on in the southern pool, which is already full of Frog Spawn...

Oh and I nealy forgot, I surprised a Water Rail under the boardwalk. It sounds like there are at least 5 left.
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Old Saturday 19th March 2005, 12:12   #2
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I also forgot the single Tree Sparrow. I'm hoping they are going to breed nearby again this year!

Here are the 51 species I have recorded so far:
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo A
Eurasian Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus A
Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus A
Eurasian Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus A
Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola A
Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus A
Sanderling Calidris alba A
Dunlin Calidris alpina A
Eurasian Curlew Numenius arquata A
Common Redshank Tringa totanus A
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus A
Mew Gull Larus canus A
Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus A
Herring Gull Larus argentatus A
Great Black-backed Gull Larus marinus A
Rock Pigeon Columba livia AC
Common Wood Pigeon Columba palumbus A
Eurasian Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto A
Sky Lark Alauda arvensis A
Meadow Pipit Anthus pratensis A
Grey Wagtail Motacilla cinerea A
White / Pied Wagtail Motacilla alba A
Winter Wren Troglodytes troglodytes A
Hedge Accentor Prunella modularis A
European Robin Erithacus rubecula A
Stonechat Saxicola torquata A
Northern Wheatear Oenanthe oenanthe A
Common Blackbird Turdus merula A
Song Thrush Turdus philomelos A
Goldcrest Regulus regulus A
Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus A
Coal Tit Parus ater A
Blue Tit Parus caeruleus A
Great Tit Parus major A
Black-billed Magpie Pica pica A
Carrion Crow Corvus corone A
Common Starling Sturnus vulgaris A
House Sparrow Passer domesticus A
Eurasian Tree Sparrow Passer montanus A
Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs A
European Greenfinch Carduelis chloris A
European Goldfinch Carduelis carduelis A
Eurasian Siskin Carduelis spinus A
Common Linnet Carduelis cannabina A
Mallard Anas platyrhynchos AC
Common Pheasant Phasianus colchicus C
Grey Heron Ardea cinerea A
Water Rail Rallus aquaticus A
Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus A
Mistle Thrush Turdus viscivorus A
Rook Corvus frugilegus A
Lesser Redpoll Carduelis cabaret A
Reed Bunting Emberiza schoeniclus A
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Old Saturday 19th March 2005, 16:51   #3
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No Red-backed Shrike?
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Old Saturday 19th March 2005, 17:03   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Smallwood
No Red-backed Shrike?
Bit early Rob - isn't this a year list?
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Old Saturday 19th March 2005, 19:04   #5
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Last week of May is the peak... in fact all 6 have been between May 19th and June 1st! My life list for Red Rocks has 189 more species on it :)
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Old Saturday 19th March 2005, 19:59   #6
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My fault- "skim reading" posts between appointments!
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Old Saturday 19th March 2005, 21:28   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Smallwood
My fault- "skim reading" posts between appointments!
You are forgiven. Would you like advance warning of the next RB Shrike? Actually I want a Woodchat this year!
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Old Saturday 19th March 2005, 23:39   #8
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For me Lesser Grey would be nice!
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Old Sunday 20th March 2005, 07:18   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Smallwood
For me Lesser Grey would be nice!
Not overly likely in Merseyside I'm afraid Rob. Though wasn't there one at Aberdaron a few years ago.... and there was the Issy at Cemlyn. I'll let you know when I find one
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Old Sunday 20th March 2005, 08:07   #10
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Hi Jane, once again you've put out a great thread about your bird spotting and itís an impressive list, thanks for the info. Yesterday I used my free bus pass for the first time and got the bus at the end of the lane and went to Birkenhead, and then I got a bus for West Kirby. I almost got off at Pinfold lane, planning to cross the Golf Course and check out the Natterjack Toads, just to see if they were spawning yet. However, I continued on and alighted at the station. I walked to the Marina but there were so many Yachts and people that no bird would venture into the area. I visited the Ashton Park where I saw a White Wagtail chasing flies on the bowling green. I continued my walk along the Wirral Way to Thurstaston where I stopped to watch from the hide, a Bullfinch, Long-tail Tits and a couple of Tree Sparrows at the feeding station. The Frogs and Toads were in full breeding and were a great attraction to the crowd of youngsters gathered there. Continuing on the Way I turned up to the Dungeon Wood then passed the Farm and back home. I had walked over five miles, and my old arthritic knee was shattered. Spring is now in full swing and on this walk I saw 1 Comma Butterfly and 3 Peacock Butterflies. Best of all I saw and heard three Yellowhammers. Sorry I didnít get off at Pinfold lane, I might have seen you there. Tanny.
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Old Sunday 20th March 2005, 13:14   #11
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You might indeed Tanny.
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Old Tuesday 22nd March 2005, 09:36   #12
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SSW4 8/8 warm still, light rain overnight

Migrants
The 5 Wheatears seen from home were still in the end garden, including my first two females of the year. I thought I might have caught a glimpse of a Black Redstart with them, but a 40 minute stakeout produced nothing but Wheatears! There was a single, silent Chiffchaff (new for the year) in the point garden and there may have been more, but no crests audible today. A single Sand Martin over the point was my first of the year (55 species - I missed a few).

overhead passage
4 Woodpigeons went south as did a party of 6 Siskins. Not a great day for OP - but then again I was about 3 hours late :)

Breeding Birds/other
I think there may be 8 pairs of Skylark breeding and the Reed Buntings are building nests. A Grey heron flew over the south end of the marsh and there are still plenty of Water Rails in the reed bed.

If I'd been keener I'd have taken a look at the incoming tide to add to the year list. Still plenty of time left in the year to do that!
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Old Friday 1st April 2005, 11:32   #13
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The female Black Redstart is still present, it been there 3 days and probably a week.... I thought I saw one from home, but its bit iffy to claim at that range based on only a tail quiver!
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Old Saturday 2nd April 2005, 11:06   #14
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SSE 1/8 cloud
, vis 4 miles

Migrants
A really early Sedge Warbler spluttered into song as I walked past. There were plenty of Willow Warblers 9 , Chiffcaffs 4 and Goldcrests 35, as well as Blackcap, Wheatear 6, and a male Common Redstart. Unfortunately though no sign of the long staying Black Redstart today. I guess it took advantage of a break in the relentless rain.

Overhead Passage
Meadow Pipit 250, Alba Wagtail 15, Sand Martin 6, Woodpiegeon 185 as well as a couple of Jackdaw and a great range of finches, including Brambling, Bullfinch and Redpoll.

Waifs and strays included single Redwing and Snipe, the latter chosing the beach over a perfectly good reed-bed!

Breeders - no change - bar the first Sedgie back and singing. Both adult Peregines made a hash of catching a pigeon, the feamle twice, though it did release a big cloud of feathers.


64 species for the year
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Old Monday 28th November 2005, 08:51   #15
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I've neglected this thread but thought it was bumping this up to give people gen on how to see the two Richard's Pipits that are in the salt marsh between Red Rocks and West Kirby.


The best place to park is Pinfold lane http://www.streetmap.co.uk/newmap.sr...1040&ay=387570

Follow the public footpath across the golf course and you will be able to see the salt marsh that contains the birds.


The best place to see the birds well from (once they are located) is from the dunes. Though further away from the bird than standing by, or as I witnessed yesterday IN, the salt marsh, you can look down into the pools, gutters and long grasses and see the birds well.
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Old Monday 28th November 2005, 12:18   #16
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The Richard's Pipits are still there this morning, Along with a nice pair of Stonechats. One bird performed the most classic hover and land I have ever seen.
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Old Tuesday 6th December 2005, 20:40   #17
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http://www.stevenround-birdphotograp...ds%20Pipit.htm

Here is one of Steve Round's fabulous pictures.
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Old Saturday 24th December 2005, 11:00   #18
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The Richard's pipits are still present. Also 4 Stonechat, Merlin and Peregrine.
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Old Sunday 15th October 2006, 09:09   #19
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The RIchard's Pipit is still knocking about - its been here for a fourtnight now. I failed to see it on the deck, but am curiious to see what age it is - I wonder if it could be of one of last winters two long stayers. This morning it came of the golf course and landed in between the Natterjack Scrapes. Lapland Bunting went the other way! The first Bramblings of the autumn went south with Chaffinches.

Not many migrants today - a Song Thrush in the dunes, a Chiffchaff in the mash Sallows and a few Goldcrests in the point gardens. resident birds included two Stonechats and a female Peregrine - the latter sat on the beach. Finally I surprised a Water Rail at the south end of the marsh - catching it out in the open.
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Old Sunday 22nd October 2006, 17:13   #20
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There was a good dawn passage on Saturday. 500+ Chaffinches, 2 Bramblings, 750 Starlings, 70 Greenfinches, 25 Meadow Pipits, 1 Rock Pipit and a largish "tsip-ing" bunting.

Also dispersing was a single Great-spotted Woodpecker which looked well out of place in a Gorse bush, and a Jackdaw which came in off the sea. Three different Peregrines were on show, including one ad female defending her kill against two hungry Carrion crows.

Otherwise the Water Rail count appears to have made it to double figures juding from the frequency and distribution of calls in the marsh. No sign of the Richard's Pipit, but we only had a half-hearted attempt at finding it.
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Old Thursday 12th April 2007, 22:42   #21
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There was a Ring Ouzel and 4 Greenland Wheatears this morning. Thought it was time to keep this thread updated.
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Old Sunday 15th April 2007, 10:01   #22
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14th April
ESE1 1/8th hazy, vis 1 mile
A classic morning weatherwise, if a little early in the year.

At first light there were a few Willow Warblers in the Poplars and I stood on a female Ring Ouzel that took off like a rocket and flew to Hilbre. A trip down the boardwalk produced a singingGrassopper Warbler and a Redstart at the south end of the marsh. A second Ring Ouzel, a smart ad male dropped into the ivy-filled hollow, known locally as the superbowl. A trip down the gardens to see it drew a blank initially, until an Ouzel was sighted in the south end of the dunes. This bird flew off high. Shortly afterwards an Imm male Ouzel appeared in the poplars, then showed very well in the end gardens for an hour or so before becoming more elusive. So at least three and possibly 4 Ouzels were present.

Overhead passage included three Tree Pipits, about 6 Swallows a Yellow Wagtail a Redpoll and a few White Wagtails. At about eight thirty there was a notable arrival of fresh migrants, with about 15 Wheatears and 20 or so Willow Warblers at the point. The most unexpected and intially rare looking bird of the morning was a Redwing which dropped into the Poplars for a minute or so before leaving to the south. There were three Sandwich Terns offshore

Three Tree Sparrows and a Rook overhead were unusual records and there was a notable movement of Woodpigeons (175) and Collared Doves (120)

A very small male Peregrine sat on the beach for about 40 mins before flying over the point. Two Kestrels and A Sparrowhawk also went through. Finally 700 or so Knot left the estaury high to the north.

Its looking good for an overshoot!
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Old Sunday 15th April 2007, 10:10   #23
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Similar weather to y'day - even warmer!

The imm male Ring Ouzel is still in the superowl, though its very elusive. At one point this morning it was singing. Fewer migrants today, though two Chiffchaffs and an unseen Goldcrest were new from yesterday and there was a new Grasshopper Warbler about half way down the boardwalk. Not exactly showy, but it was briefly visible. About 12 Willow Warblers arrived at 9am and a little later what appeared to be a Lesser Whitethroat dived into the ivy. Alas I got nothing on it at all.

Two Tree pipits, including one sat in the Poplars on a couple of occasions, about 15 Redpoll, 2 Siskins, two more (or the same) Tree Sparrows, three Swallows, a Yellow Wagtail a Great spotted Woodpecker and two Jackdaws constituted this morning's visible passge. Oh and there was a Short-eared owl that flew over, though I didn't see which diection it arrived from.
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Old Monday 16th April 2007, 09:26   #24
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News from Red Rocks this morning suggested that a few more migrants have arrived. The Grasshopper Warbler is still reeling away and has been joined by Sedge Warbler and Whitethroat
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Old Monday 16th April 2007, 20:01   #25
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An Osprey cut the corner and flew over Hoylake at about 2.30 today, with Crows in hot-pursuit.
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